2015: Year In Review
2015 has been a great year with a couple of milestones:
- Completed my mandatory national service aka NYSC
- Learned Harp and created a site from scratch
- Bought a domain name and launched oguching.com
- Wrote and published lsdf, my first node cli tool
- Created front-end links
I'd like to take some time to talk about each of these items.
NYSC or National Youth Service Corps is a one year program for all Nigerians who have completed College or University whether they studied in the country or abroad. It aims to promote unity through different team building activities.
There are two parts to it; the first part is a 3 week camp experience (there is at least one camp in each of the 36 states of the country) that includes some para-military training. The second part begins straight afterwards, each individual is posted to a community to serve as a teacher or medical personnel, as the case may be, but most people assist in teaching in a High School usually in the rural areas.
I was a computer science teacher at Umuobiala Community Secondary School in Isuikwuato Local Government Area of Abia State. We were 5 in my batch posted there and I was one of the two assistant computer science teachers at the school and I was in charge of three classes.
I've never taught in a class prior to this, we had a short training in camp but it's no where adequate for what you face in class. I observed that while most of the kids can read and write, no understanding of what they were reading. They struggled to answer simple questions that required some comprension of what they can clearly read. I also found the curriculum rather inadequate. The kids were learning QBasic in a school without computers or electricity, so everything was theoretical and it sucked big time. I however loved what I was doing and actually miss those kids.
During this time I was also involved in the Nigerian Christian Corpers' Fellowship (NCCF) and eventually became the Zonal Secretary for Isuikwuato zone. It was a tough job that involved preparing daily devotions and assigning people to give them, sharing at our weekly Bible study, preparing reports and presenting them at the state headquarters in Umuahia, Abia State. It was a big responsibility, there were times I felt like I wouldn't make it but thank God I did it, and I'm glad I did. I would pray for strength and wisdom everyday and God gave me the strength and ability to carry out my job.
I've had sketches on paper for years for what my site would look like but I suck at CSS so while they looked great on paper I could never translate them to a working site. I could have just used a template but that would rob me of the opportunity to learn plus studying someone else's code makes my head hurt.
The site is simple but evolving, it is built with the help of Twitter Bootstrap and hosted on the wonderful surge. I love surge.
lsdf is a commandline tool for listing files in a directory.
I can't imagine anyone using it, but I created it because I create lots of files to try things out
and usually would
ls filename to see if it already exists so I don't need to create it. The problem
ls is that you need to be specific and list filename.extension. I don't care about the extension
just the name and that's what
lsdf does. So
lsdf foo would list
foo.css ... if it exists
and do nothing if it doesn't. At the time of writing, it has a whopping 15 downloads. Winning!!
For 2016 I have a list of things I want to learn:
- CSS & HTML (Level up)
- Data Visualisation (D3.js et al)